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Preparing your Obstetrical Staff for High-Risk, Low-Frequency Emergencies

August 2, 2022
August 2, 2022

Ongoing training to help your obstetrical staff deliver safe, high-quality care is likely already a part of ongoing efforts in your hospital. These efforts have likely built both competence and confidence in your OB staff, but what about those obstetrical emergencies that happen less frequently? Is your OB staff prepared to handle the kinds of high-risk, low-frequency emergencies that may have catastrophic results for mother and/or baby?


High-Risk, Low-Frequency Obstetrical Emergencies

Your staff can learn to recognize the risk factors, causes, and the signs of even the lowest incidence obstetrical emergencies. More importantly, they can learn how to manage these emergencies if/when they arise.

High-risk, low-frequency obstetrical emergencies can include: 

  • Shoulder dystocia – It is usually unanticipated and while it occurs in just 1% of deliveries, it is considered one of the top causes of perinatal mortality and morbidity and maternal morbidity.
  • Post-partum hemorrhage – This complication occurs more frequently - in 10-15% of post-partum women.
  • Maternal sepsis – This is perhaps the most preventable of these risks, but still a significant risk, accounting for up to 28% of maternal deaths.
  • Hypertensive disorders – This complication affects as many as 10% of all pregnancies and can cause premature birth and is responsible for roughly 17% of maternal mortality.

These kinds of emergencies are contributory to the disappointing maternal mortality statistics that have persisted in the U.S. for decades. Ensuring that staff is prepared to successfully recognize and manage these and other emergencies can mean safer deliveries and better outcomes for women and babies.


Solutions That Save Lives and Manage Risks

Will your staff be able to respond with competence and confidence in the event of a serious obstetrical emergency? The price of a poorly managed obstetrical emergency is extremely high. Women and babies potentially pay with their lives or with a lifetime of health issues and hospitals will pay too. Ongoing training and education is fundamental to improving obstetrical outcomes. HealthStream has educational solutions for maternal child nursing care that can be a part of your strategy to improve maternal child health outcomes.

HealthStream can help improve your nursing staff’s clinical judgement, reduce the risk of costly errors and help your maternal and neonatal staff practice more confidently. Leaders can also feel confident in this suite of solutions that includes well-established, evidence-based education that can truly empower your maternal care team while building confidence in their ability to handle an emergency.

The Child & Maternal Health solution can improve confidence and outcomes with tools that help: 

  • Identify appropriate actions to take through the use of newborn nursing diagnosis lists
  • Provide individualized post-partum discharge plans for new mothers
  • Improve outcomes – HealthStream clients using Quality OB are experiencing a 22% decrease in negative events when compared to the national average and some clients have even reached their goal of zero harm events over multiple years after switching to the program
  • Provide education on pediatric acute and critical care
  • Prepare staff and new mothers with breastfeeding resources
  • Provides resources that educate nurses on infant pre and post-resuscitation stabilization